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ProfiTrace FAQ's

The most frequently asked questions about ProfiTrace

ProfiTrace 2

I'm looking for a document that describes what is a bad and good signal?

The ProfiTrace 2 manual contains all kinds of example measurements (wire breaks, short circuits, stub lines, etc) that can be compared with the real situation. Please download it from our website.

Can I get a trigger signal for an external oscilloscope from Proficore Ultra?

YES, ProfiCore Ultra still allows you to connect an external oscilloscope. But, we prefer you to use the ScopeWare which makes electrical measurements much easier.

Sometimes ProfiTrace cannot detect the baudrate. When I set it to manual, it works. What is the solution to solve this problem?

Sometimes the combination PC, ProfiCore and PROFIBUS can make it difficult for the software to detect the baudrate. This has to do with a certain timeout. This timeout can be set in: Settings->Preferences->General. Here you find the timeout for the baudrate detection. Set it to a higher value and in most cases this will solve the problem.

Which GSD file version is supported by ProfiTrace?

ProfiTrace and ProfiCaptain support GSD file version 3. Any unknown entries in the GSD file are ignored (higher GSD file versions).

What happends if you switch on the termination of the Tapconnector?

You will have 3 terminators in the segment and that could cause data communication problems. The reason we have it is described in the Topology scan part of the FAQs.

ProfiTrace 2 - Operating systems, drivers and installation

How do I install drivers on a Windows 8 system?

We have an application note available describing all the steps.

Click here to download the application note

After this on some PCs it is also required to run ProfiTrace in the Windows XP compatibility mode (SP 2).

Topology scan hangs in a Window 7 environment. How can I solve this?

Select Windows XP in the compatibility properties of ProfiTrace.

Can I install ProfiTrace 2 next to ProfiTrace 1?

YES, it uses another default installation directory and the drivers are different. You can even run both applications at the same time.

Can I run ProfiTrace 2 on a Windows 2000 system?

This depends on 2 factors; the performance and the system has to be equipped with high speed USB 2.0 ports.

Can I run ProfiTrace 2 on a Windows Vista system?


It might be necessary to run in Windows XP Compatibility mode. You can set this in the properties of the exe file.

Can I run ProfiTrace 2 on a Windows 7 system?

Yes, version 2.4 and later provides drivers to run ProfiTrace on Windows 7 systems.

After installing ProfiTrace I see 2 programs. Which one should I use?

The ProfiTrace package consists out of 2 applications, ‘ProfiTrace Vx.y’ and ‘ProfiTrace for COMbricks’. You require ProfiTrace Vx.y when you have a ProfiCore Ultra (Toolkit). In some cases after installing ProfiTrace only ProfiTrace for COMbricks is visible in the Start Menu of Windows. You can find ProfiTrace Vx.y for your ProfiCore Ultra in the submenu of ProfiTrace in [All Programs].

ProfiTrace 2 - Topology scan

Will the Topology scan be able to scan through repeaters?

NO, You will not be able to scan through repeaters, but you can clearly see which devices are behind a repeater, because the cable length between them will be 0 m.

Can the Topology scan create a network drawing of the Profibus PA network?

At the moment it is only RS 485 (DP)! For PA it will be very difficult due to junction boxes and Ex barriers.

How can I exclude participants before starting the Topology Scan?

In the Network Manager you can create segments by adding repeaters to the network and dividing the devices over the segments. Select one of your segments (set current measuring point) and generate the topology. You will see that only the devices on the specific segment are visible.

How can I improve my Topology Scan results?

There are cases where the Topology Scan does not work as expected. The topology is calculated with the help of a generated distortion on the segment and is therefore sensitive to the signal quality of the segment itself.

To make the Topology Scan more successful, please TURN ON THE TERMINATION SWITCH OF THE TAP CONNECTOR before starting the Topology Scan. This will add an extra termination to the 2 existing termination resistors at both ends of the segment. Do not forget to turn off the termination switch when finished.

Note: Because an extra termination is added to the network, this must be done in a stable and reflection free segment! This reduces possible communication disturbances.

ProfiTrace 2 - Hardware requirements

Which USB version is supported?

ProfiTrace 2 supports high speed USB 2.0.

I have a CP5611 card. Can I run ProfiTrace on it?

NO, ProfiTrace works only with the ProfiCore hardware.

Can ProfiCore Ultra overload the bus when it is attached to a running installation?

ProfiCore Ultra is designed and produced around the latest RS 485 technology (1/5 of a standard bus load). This means the load of ProfiCore Ultra can be ignored on a full bus segment. Spur cables are also no problem, because the USB cable is the path to the PC (5 meters). ProfiCore Ultra can be connected very close to the network and the PC can be on a distance from the tap point.

Is it possible to analyze a PA segment?

YES, if you want to use the ProfiCore Ultra on a PA bus, attach the PA probe to the ProfiCore Ultra. The PA probe transforms the extracted signals from the PA bus to information which is fed into the ProfiCore Ultra.

ProfiTrace 2 - Reporting

For generating a PDF file of the report, can you advice a freeware PDF creator?

For creating PDF files you can use the freeware tool PDFill. You can download it at: www.pdfill.com

What is the meaning of item 6.2 of the report (Slaves that generated diagnostics while in data exchange)?

Many devices can send diagnostic messages when for instance there is a module failure or an I/O channel error. In a fault free installation most devices will not send these messages. It is a decision of the end-user to decide if the content of a diagnostic message is critical.

What software can be used to view PTX files?

PTX files are used to save or load texts for the Report Generator in ProfiTrace. Click on 'Generate Report' in the Report menu and then 'Load Settings'. There you can select a PTX file.

ProfiTrace 2 - Licenses

Where are license files installed?

License files are installed in a common application directory (this used to be the \app directory).

- On Windows 7 it is usually located at: "C:\ProgramData\procentec\proficoreultra"
- On Windows XP it is usually located at: "C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\procentec\proficoreultra"

Note: the common directory is usually a hidden directory.

When I order ProfiTrace without ScopeWare, Topology scan and Bar graph, can I buy these licenses later?

YES, licenses for every single software option can be purchased at any time.

How can I obtain a license file?

The license can be obtained in 2 ways:

  1. Connect the PC with ProfiTrace installed to the internet. Click on Init ProfiTrace and follow further instructions.
  2. Download the license from our website. Go to http://www.procentec.com/_licenses/ and follow further instructions.

The license file has the extension .PLD and can be installed on all PCs.

ProfiTrace 2 - Live List

In the Live List I do not see the device names, only the addresses. How can I display them?

Only when a diagnostic message is transmitted, an Ident Number can be trapped, which ProfiTrace links to a GSD file that contains the device name. You can generate a diagnostic message with ProfiCaptain. Join the network as an additional master and do a ?network scan? (in the ?Class 2 Commands?). You can of course also remove the power or connector from the device, but that is not recommended.

Why are slaves that are not in data exchange blinking in the Live List with a yellow background?

Your bus cycle is slower than the ProfiTrace update of the Live List. You should make the update time higher. You can do this in the settings menu: Preferences->Live List settings->Assume station lost after.

Why are some devices in the Live List blinking from Red to Green?

The blinking devices, are devices that have master and slave functionality at the same time Red means master, Green a slave in Data Exchange. Nothing is wrong. But a lot of people make mistakes with the busparameters, because they have to be identical on all masters.

ProfiCaptain

We have slaves without switches to set the network address. Can we use ProfiCaptain to do it over the PROFIBUS?

YES, ProfiCaptain supports the SetSlaveAddress function to set the network address of DP and PA slaves.

Can I copy the GSD bitmaps into a common directory that ProfiCaptain can scan?

YES, the bitmaps associated with the GSD files must be copied manually to the \gsd directory. Do not forget to generate the catalog again.

How can I remove a GSD file from the catalog?

To remove a GSD file from the catalog you need to manually delete the file from the GSD directory and generate the catalog again: Settings->Generate Catalog.

PA Probe and PROFIBUS PA

I am using the PA Probe and when I trace messages I see ?MBP End del." in the column "Attention". What does it mean?

It means that the PA Probe did not detect a correct MBP end delimiter. The MBP start and end delimiter are signatures used to identify the begin and end of a message on the MBP PA physical level and are additional to the start delimiter of the standard PROFIBUS message.

Can I change a device address with the PA Probe?

The PA-Probe can only listen on a PA network. So you cannot use it to change the address of your device. If your network is using transparent couplers or links, you can connect your ProfiCore to the DP-side of your network and use ProfiCaptain to change the address.

Product comparison

With other tools that use PCMCIA and PCI cards, the Live List stops when I select another function. Is this better organized with ProfiTrace?

YES, because of the ProfiTrace 2 structure everything keeps on running. You can select multiple options and processes that run separately.

Is ProfiTrace 2 the same as the Profibus Tester, PBT3 and other analyzers?

ProfiTrace 2 is much better; it combines all the other clunky and expensive tools to just 1 simple USB interface. You only have to do 1 investment to get everything and it can do a lot more. Also you have integrated master functionality that the others cannot provide.

Message Recording

Can ProfiTrace 2 decode DP-V2 messages?

YES, ProfiTrace decodes DXB, SRD_MCAST and Isochrone spare DP-V2 related functions.

In networks that still have old FMS components, will I be able to see the SAPs and hex data from messages of these components?

YES, ProfiTrace will capture and display every PROFIBUS message. So, you can inspect the SAPs and the data. Also the Live List and large parts of the statistics are useable.

Bar graph

What is the difference between 'AB Diff voltage' and 'AB Diff stable voltage'?

'AB Diff voltage' is the average amplitude of the signal and 'AB Diff stable voltage' is the minimum measured amplitude.

ProfiTrace 1 / ProfiTrace EDU

What is the pin-layout of the Trigger connector on the ProfiCore?

The pin-layout is defined as follows:

  • Pin 1: 3.3V power (output)
  • Pin 4: Trigger GND
  • Pin 5: Trigger
  • Pin 8: Power GND
After installation, I tried to start ProfiTrace, but it does not recognize the ProfiCore. What can I do?
  1. The green LED on the ProfiCore should be on. This means the device is powered and your USB interface is probably OK
  2. Download and install the latest version of ProfiTrace
  3. Install the USB drivers again
  4. Install the latest service packs of your operating system

ProfiScript

Do we get all the official test cases when we purchase ProfiScript?

YES, you have to write a request to us and we will mail all the test cases directly.

Does ProfiScript support testing for slave and master devices?

NO, ProfiScript is only for slave testing.

For Certification, 2 masters are required. Can ProfiScript with ProfiCore simulate 2 masters?

ProfiScript uses the ProfiCore as a single, standard, token passing master. However, it has the additional possibility to send messages by using a different source (master) address. This is the way the 'secondary master' is 'simulated'.

What does LSTAT: OK, UE, RR, RS, DL, NR, DH, RDL, RDH, LS, NA, DS, NO, LR, IV, LO and HI mean?

These are the types of messages and their status. For example:

  • NA = No Answer
  • RR = Rejected Resource
  • RS = Rejected Service
  • These LSTATs come from the Frame Control (FC) byte of the received PROFIBUS message
Which protocols can be tested with ProfiScript?

DP-V0 and DP-V1